Working in the garden in Parc Champlain, Aylmer/Gatineau, Quebec 10 May 2017

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

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Britannia Conservation Area – 21 April 2017

IMG_2530 - DEJU IMG_2525 - YRWA IMG_2548 - YRWAIMG_2513 - RWBL IMG_2494 IMG_2497 - flowering tree IMG_2484 - HETH IMG_2487 - RCKI IMG_2486 - DEJU IMG_2482 - HETH IMG_2479 - HETH IMG_2474 - HETH IMG_2321 - COHA IMG_2333 - COHA IMG_2311 - red-berried elder IMG_2334 - COHA IMG_2349 - COHA IMG_2354 - COHA IMG_2379 - COHA IMG_2375 - COHA IMG_2370 - COHA IMG_2388 - COHA IMG_2383 - COHA IMG_2394 - COHA IMG_2418 - COHA IMG_2417 - COHA IMG_2405 - COHA

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Gulls on the Ottawa River 08 Dec 2016

08 December 2016

December 8th was my birthday and I decided to head out to Lac Deschenes on the Ottawa River to go birding and hopefully see some nice birds. It was a little chilly with snow squalls passing through all day. It was a good chance to study Herring Gulls of different ages and varying plumages. All the Herring Gulls I saw and photographed are presumed of the American subspecies, Larus argentatus smithsonianus. Note that when I refer to a bird as having double mirrors I mean a mirror on p10 as well as on p9. Birds with double mirrors are assumed to likely be of the northeastern type breeding in Newfoundland and wintering along the American Atlantic coast with some birds making it inland to the Great Lakes.

Great Black-backed Gull

Great Black-backed Gull

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Great Black-backed Gull (adult)

Great Black-backed Gull (adult)

Great Black-backed Gull (!st cycle)

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle)

Great Black-backed Gull (!st cycle)

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle)

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers taking flight again.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers gaining altitude awkwardly but still managing.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers was a bit lop-sided in flight.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers.

Ring-billed Gull missing several primary feathers in flight (lowest bird).

Great Black-backed Gull

When a Great Black-backed Gull dives at a steep angle the rest of the gulls know to get out of the way.

Herring Gull with reduced black in wingtip.

Herring Gull that appears to have reduced black in wingtip.

Herring Gull with reduced black in wingtip.

Herring Gull with (appearance of) reduced black in wingtip compared with an average Herring Gull.

Herring Gull with reduced black in wingtip.

Herring Gull with reduced black in wingtip appearance caused by molt. This bird is regrowing p10.

Herring Gull with reduced black in wingtip.

Herring Gull regrowing p10 creating a reduced black in wingtip appearance.

Herring Gull (1st cycle)

Herring Gull (1st cycle). Note: pale window in inner primaries.

Herring Gull (2nd cycle)

Herring Gull (2nd cycle I suspect). Note: grey feathers in mantle.

Herring Gull (1st cycle)

Herring Gull (2nd cycle).

Herring Gull with very dark streaks on head.

Herring Gull with very dark streaks on head (left of centre) with various other gulls.

Herring Gull (1st cycle) and Ring-billed Gulls.

Herring Gull (3rd cycle on left and three 1st cycle birds in centre) and Ring-billed Gulls.

Herring Gulls

Herring Gulls (mostly 1st cycle) with Ring-billed Gulls.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle)

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle).

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle)

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle).

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle)

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle).

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) landing.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) landing.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) with wings spread.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring Gull (1st cycle) with wings spread.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle)

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle left of centre).

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle) arriving during a snow squall.

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle) flies through a snow squall.

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle).

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle).

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle).

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle).

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle).

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle).

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle)

Glaucous Gull (1st cycle) with head hidden. Note: pale overall colouration, white wingtips and short primary projection.

Herring, Ring-billed and Great Black-backed Gulls.

Herring, Ring-billed and Great Black-backed Gulls. Note: typical Smithsonianus wingtip patterns with one mirror on p10; Dark 1st cycle AHG (right of GBBG) possibly a northern bird still in juvenile plumage; Herring Gull (3rd cycle on far right).

Ring-billed Gull

Ring-billed Gull (adult). Note: typical winter nape streaking.

Herring Gull

Herring Gull (presumed, adult) with extreme head streaking and interesting wingtip pattern. Note: large mirror on p10 almost merged with primary tip – almost complete absence of subterminal band on p10; also second mirror on p9.

Herring Gull

Wingtip of Herring Gull with extreme head streaking. Note: this is bird’s left wing (vs. right wing visible in photo above).

Gulls resting on sand spit.

Gulls resting on sand spit.

Gulls resting on sand spit.

Gulls resting on sand spit. Note: Herring Gull with dark head streaking likely the same bird as above, note the folded wingtip pattern with large p10 mirror visible on underside of folded wing.

Herring Gull (1st cycle)

Herring Gull (1st cycle).

Herring Gull with double mirror, possible northeastern ssp./type.

Herring Gull (wing stretch) with double mirror and large white tip on p5.

Herring Gull (3rd cycle)

Herring Gull (3rd cycle).

Herring Gull (3rd cycle)

Herring Gull (3rd cycle).

Herring Gull (3rd cycle)

Herring Gull (3rd cycle).

Herring Gulls

Herring Gulls (3rd cycle just landed).

Herring Gulls

Herring Gulls. Note that bird with arrow caught my attention as being unique, possible dark iris. This bird is also possible in the previous photo above on the far left.

Gulls resting on sand spit.

Gulls resting on sand spit offering decent views over the course of the afternoon.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring and Ring-billed Gulls of various ages.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) probing like a sandpiper and Herring and Ring-billed Gulls of various ages.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring and Ring-billed Gulls of various ages.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring and Ring-billed Gulls of various ages.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring Gull with double mirrors.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring Gull (regrowing p10) with double mirrors.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring Gull with double mirrors.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring Gull (regrowing p10) with double mirrors.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring Gull with double mirrors.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle) and Herring Gull (regrowing p10) with double mirrors.

Herring Gull (adult) with double mirrors.

Herring Gull (adult) with double mirrors.

Herring Gull (adult) with double mirrors.

Herring Gull (adult) with double mirrors.

Herring Gull (adult) with double mirrors.

Herring Gull (adult) with double mirrors.

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle).

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle).

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle).

Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle). Note: underwing pattern.

Great Black-backed Gull and Herring Gulls.

Great Black-backed Gull and Herring Gulls. Note: scapular crescents on GBBG and visibly massive p10.

Herring Gull (1st cycle)

Herring Gull (1st cycle). Note: pale window created by paler inner primaries.

Herring Gull (adult) with reduced black in wingtips.

Herring Gull with reduced black in wingtips in flight. Note: also an interesting AHG with possible dark iris swimming in foreground.

Herring Gull (adult) with reduced black in wingtips.

Herring Gull (adult) with reduced black in wingtips. Note: interesting black wingtip pattern shape on underwing; note also the bird is mid-molt with many secondary feathers missing/regrowing.

Ring-billed Gull (1st cycle)

Ring-billed Gull (1st cycle). Note: fringing on mantle and scapular feathering; also the dark sharp pointed appearance on greater coverts (rounded on Mew/Common Gull and sharply pointed in RBGU).

Herring Gull (1st cycle)

Herring Gull (1st cycle).

To top off my birthday I got unbelievably great scope views of the 1st cycle Glaucous Gull that came down out of a snow squall and landed on the sand spit in front of me with the rest of the gulls. In this short video clip I documented 4 different species of gulls in various age cycles:

All of these photos were taken by me on 08 December 2016 at Andrew Haydon Park on the shores of Lac Deschenes – Ottawa River IBA in Ottawa, ON.

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December Record Chestnut-sided Warbler in Ottawa, ON

10 December 2016

Around noon today Bev McBride and Dave Moore found and identified a Chestnut-sided Warbler at Britannia Conservation Area. Luckily, I was only a few feet away and they called me over. They did not have a camera with them and wanted to make sure that we documented this sighting. A Chestnut-sided Warbler is a neotropical migrant and should be in Central America by now spending the winter months in warmer climes. The bird today appeared to be a first-fall female so I am assuming it is in first basic plumage. If anyone notices something that makes them believe otherwise than we can post an update.

 

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler sits in the snow.

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler digs in the snow and leaf litter searching for food.

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler in basic plumage blends in with it’s surroundings.

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler is well camouflaged.

Chestnut-side Warbler

The Chestnut-sided Warbler even got in to a squabble with a Black-capped Chickadee.

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler blends in well with green leaves.

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

When it’s this cold out, you have to stay on the go!

Chestnut-side Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

This bird was found by Bev McBride at Britannia Conservation Area, below the ridge, on 10 December 2o16 in Ottawa, ON.

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Sunset 21 May 2016

IMG_1051 - sunset wide IMG_1044 - sunset clouds

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Green’s Creek – 17 May 2016

I went on a short outing to Green’s Creek in the east end of Ottawa, ON this afternoon. I didn’t see too many species. It was actually pretty cool out because the arctic air mass is still over us here in the Ottawa valley. It was threatening to rain on me so I didn’t do much exploring but just walked straight from Montreal Rd./St. Jospeph Blvd. to Tauvette St./Innes Rd. Along the way I didn’t see as many distractions as I would’ve liked. I keep hoping that there’ll be more warbler action in the area but so far haven’t seen much.

One of the first birds I saw was a Brown-headed Cowbird perched atop a dead tree. A Red-tailed Hawk was flying over and everyone was keeping an eye on it and a few American Goldfinches flew out to chase it as it passed. Later on down the trail I saw another hawk, a Broad-winged Hawk, and it flew low overhead. I didn’t get any photos as it happened really fast but the sky was too bright and cloudy for photos anyway.

The best bird I saw was a Tennessee Warbler that was hanging out with a couple Black-capped Chickadees. I managed to get a few shots of it when it was closest to me as it was working it’s way through the low bushes hunting and gleaning insects off the newly leaved branches. I had a couple opportunities to see the Tennesse Warbler below eye-level so I could see it’s brilliant green back but I was too slow to get any shots of that, but I tried!

Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)

Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Tennessee Warbler (Oreothlypis peregrina)

Flowering tree - maybe plum or peach?

Flowering tree – maybe plum or peach?

Dead fly on flowering tree

Dead fly on flowering tree

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius)

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius)

Meeway for now, bye!

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Blustery Day Warblering – 16 May 2016

I went out birding today in the chilly windy weather hoping to find warblers grounded and easy to find low down near the ground. I got quite a few different species but I missed getting photos of a bunch of the birds that I saw today. I missed getting photos of Baltimore Oriole,  Ovenbird, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Winter Wren, Red-eyed Vireo and Magnolia Warbler twice! Imagine all the birds that I came close to and missed seeing altogether. For the most part it was quiet today (bird-wise) but I came across a few mixed flocks of warblers and vireos travelling together. The first one I saw in McCarthy Woods East was by far the biggest and the best. The birds were moving along so fast though and I was so overwhelmed that I lost track of them all pretty quickly.

Below are labeled photos of the birds I saw at the different places I made it to today;

Common Yellowthroat (male) - McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) – McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) - McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) – McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) - McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) – McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) - McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) – McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) - McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Common Yellowthroat (male) – McCarthy Woods East/Linton Park

Black-and-white Warbler (male) - McCarthy Woods East

Black-and-white Warbler (male) – McCarthy Woods East

Blackburnian Warbler (female) - McCarthy Woods East

Blackburnian Warbler (female) – McCarthy Woods East

Blackburnian Warbler (female) - McCarthy Woods East

Blackburnian Warbler (female) – McCarthy Woods East

Blackburnian Warbler (female) - McCarthy Woods East

Blackburnian Warbler (female) – McCarthy Woods East

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) - McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) – McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) - McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) – McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) - McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) – McCarthy Woods

Blue-headed Vireo - McCarthy Woods

Blue-headed Vireo – McCarthy Woods

Blackburnian Warbler (male) - McCarthy Woods

Blackburnian Warbler (male) – McCarthy Woods

Blackburnian Warbler (male) - McCarthy Woods

Blackburnian Warbler (male) – McCarthy Woods

Chestnut-sided Warbler (male) - McCarthy Woods

Chestnut-sided Warbler (male) – McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) - McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) – McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) - McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) – McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) - McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) – McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) - McCarthy Woods

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum) – McCarthy Woods

McCarthy Woods

McCarthy Woods

McCarthy Woods

McCarthy Woods

McCarthy Woods

McCarthy Woods

unknown at the moment

unknown at the moment

unknown at the moment

unknown at the moment

unknown at the moment

unknown at the moment

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (female) - McCarthy Woods West

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (female) – McCarthy Woods West

Black-and-white Warbler Undertail Coverts (male) - McCarthy Woods West

Black-and-white Warbler Undertail Coverts (male) – McCarthy Woods West

Black-throated Blue Warbler (male) - McCarthy Woods West

Black-throated Blue Warbler (male) – McCarthy Woods West

Deciduous Trees - McCarthy Woods West

Deciduous Trees – McCarthy Woods West

Deciduous Trees - McCarthy Woods West

Deciduous Trees – McCarthy Woods West

Deciduous Tree Bark - McCarthy Woods West

Deciduous Tree Bark – McCarthy Woods West

"Glacial Erratic" - McCarthy Woods West

“Glacial Erratic” – McCarthy Woods West

Caterpillar - McCarthy Woods West

Caterpillar – McCarthy Woods West

Song Sparrow - McCarthy Woods West

Song Sparrow – McCarthy Woods West

Eastern Pheobe - McCarthy Woods West

Eastern Pheobe – McCarthy Woods West

Eastern Pheobe - McCarthy Woods West

Eastern Pheobe – McCarthy Woods West

Field Pussytoes (Antennaria neglecta) - McCarthy Woods West

Field Pussytoes (Antennaria neglecta) – McCarthy Woods West

Field Pussytoes (Antennaria neglecta) - McCarthy Woods West

Field Pussytoes (Antennaria neglecta) – McCarthy Woods West

Almost ready to flower

Almost ready to flower

Red-tailed Hawk and American Crows - Riverside Dr.

Red-tailed Hawk and American Crows – Riverside Dr.

Can you spot the warbler? Dominion Arboretum

Can you spot the warbler? Dominion Arboretum

Nashville Warbler - Dominion Arboretum

Nashville Warbler – Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) - Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) – Dominion Arboretum

Least Flycatcher - Dominion Arboretum

Least Flycatcher – Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) - Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) – Dominion Arboretum

Least Flycatcher - Dominion Arboretum

Least Flycatcher – Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) - Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) – Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) - Dominion Arboretum

Black-throated Blue Warbler (female) – Dominion Arboretum

Least Flycatcher - Dominion Arboretum

Least Flycatcher – Dominion Arboretum

Red-winged Blackbird (female) - Fletcher Wildlife Gardens

Red-winged Blackbird (female) – Fletcher Wildlife Gardens

Yellow Warbler (female) - FWG

Yellow Warbler (female) – FWG

Yellow Warbler (female) - FWG

Yellow Warbler (female) – FWG

Yellow Warbler (female) - FWG

Yellow Warbler (female) – FWG

Yellow Warbler (female) - FWG

Yellow Warbler (female) – FWG

American Redstart (male) - FWG

American Redstart (male) – FWG

American Redstart (male) - FWG

American Redstart (male) – FWG

Flowering Tree - Fletcher Wildlife Gardens

Flowering Tree – Fletcher Wildlife Gardens

American Goldfinch (male) - Central Experimental Farm

American Goldfinch (male) – Central Experimental Farm

Savannah Sparrow - Central Experimental Farm

Savannah Sparrow – Central Experimental Farm

Savannah Sparrow - Central Experimental Farm

Savannah Sparrow – Central Experimental Farm

Savannah Sparrow - Central Experimental Farm

Savannah Sparrow – Central Experimental Farm

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Dominion Arboretum and FWG – 13 May 2016

I went out this afternoon after it stopped raining hoping for a fallout of migrating songbirds. I wouldn’t exactly call what I saw a fallout but I wasn’t disappointed! There was a major influx of birds since yesterday, most notably Swainson Thrushes, many more Yellow-rumped Warblers and few other species of wood-warblers. Because it’s late and I’m planning on trying for a Big Day tomorrow on 14 May, International Migratory Bird Day I’m going to end off here and just post my photos from today.

Dominion Arboretum

Dominion Arboretum

Magnolia Trees

Magnolia Trees

Magnolia Tree

Magnolia Tree

Magnolia Tree

Magnolia Tree

Magnolia Tree

Magnolia Tree

Magnolia Tree

Magnolia Tree

Yellow Magnolia Flowers

Yellow Magnolia Flowers

Yellow Magnolia Flowers

Yellow Magnolia Flowers

Yellow Magnolia Flowers

Yellow Magnolia Flowers

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Swainson's Thrush #1

Swainson’s Thrush #1

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Flowering Tree

Flowering Tree

Flowering Tree

Flowering Tree

Tennessee Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

Possible Gray-cheeked Thrush

Possible Gray-cheeked Thrush

Possible Gray-cheeked Thrush

Possible Gray-cheeked Thrush

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Rhododendron at Dominion Arboretum

Rhododendron at Dominion Arboretum

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl

Pine Warbler

Pine Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chipping Sparrow

Chipping Sparrow

Dominion Arboretum

Dominion Arboretum

Flowering Tree

Flowering Tree

Common Grackle

Common Grackle

Eastern Kingbird

Eastern Kingbird

Warbling Vireo

Warbling Vireo

Warbling Vireo

Warbling Vireo

Swainson's Thrush #2

Swainson’s Thrush #2

Swainson's Thrush #2

Swainson’s Thrush #2

Swainson's Thrush #2

Swainson’s Thrush #2

Swainson's Thrush #2

Swainson’s Thrush #2

Bat

Bat

Bat

Bat

Black-and-white Warbler (female)

Black-and-white Warbler (female)

Black-and-white Warbler (female)

Black-and-white Warbler (female)

Yellow Warbler

Yellow Warbler

American Redstart

American Redstart

American Redstart

American Redstart

American Redstart

American Redstart

American Redstart

American Redstart

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Heron Road

Heron Road

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Green’s Creek Wildflowers and A Few Birds – 11 May 2016

When I got to Green’s Creek Conservation Area at around 4pm this afternoon one the first birds I saw was a huge female Peregrine Falcon circling and soaring overhead. I tried to take a few photos of her but I actually didn’t have a SD card in my camera at the time! This has happened to me more times than I can count, the problem is because I usually take out the card to insert into my computer’s card reader. Anyway, the first bird I took an actual photograph of that I saved to disk was a Rose-breasted Grosbeak. A bright and fresh spring male was singing in a tree just to the side of the trail.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus)

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus)

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus)

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus)

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus)

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (Pheucticus ludovicianus)

Further along the trail a few American Robins were flushed up ahead by a couple off-leash dogs (there are hundreds here btw).  A few steps later I noticed a brownish bird hop from the trail ahead of me into a tangle. I used my binoculars and saw a thrush species with a rufous-brown nape or back of the head/neck. I could just see the folded wingtips and I noticed right away that they weren’t rufous-tinged or coloured at all and were brown compared to the nape. My first thought was, “It’s not a Hermit Thrush!” I tried to take a picture but I only had one chance and it didn’t turn out. The bird flew over the trail and into a shrub that I was able to see with an unobstructed view. When the bird flew I noticed that it’s back was redder than it’s wings. When it landed I could see that it’s underside was fairly clean (for a catharus thrush). All this put together = Veery!

Veery (Catharus fuscescens)

Veery (Catharus fuscescens)

Much of the Green’s Creek area and it’s “table lands” were once farmland and is now in various stages of succession. The ants have obviously been hard at work reclaiming and “decolonizing” or maybe it should be “recolonizing” although I bet they never left. I also really love the area’s of Green’s Creek that fall in the ravine and steep escarpment type categories. Because I assume these areas were not good for farming the trees were left alone for the most part and so there are old growth stands and the conifers in particular are jsut mind blowing. I’ve never seen any spruce that are as tall and as old anywhere else within the city of Ottawa besides the Dominion Arboretum but this is a more natural setting. I also noticed lots of wildflowers in various stages of growth. I saw two species of trillium, an invasive or exotic species of spruce and new to me species of flowering shrub, an American Fly Honeysuckle, that had the most eye catching little yellow flowers.

Ant Hills

Ant Hills

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Norway Spruce (Picea abies)

Norway Spruce (Picea abies)

Norway Spruce (Picea abies)

Norway Spruce (Picea abies)

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflora)

White Trillium (Trillium grandiflora)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Star-flowered Solomon's Seal (Maianthemum stellatum)

Star-flowered Solomon’s Seal (Maianthemum stellatum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum) and Star-flowered Solomon's Seal (Maianthemum stellatum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum) and Star-flowered Solomon’s Seal (Maianthemum stellatum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

unknown?

unknown?

Fiddleheads (?)

Fiddleheads (?)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

American Fly Honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

unknown wildflower?

unknown wildflower?

Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) gone to seed

Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) gone to seed

Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) gone to seed

Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) gone to seed

Ferns

Ferns

Dog Violet (Viola conspersa) - I think

Dog Violet (Viola conspersa) – I think got t

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Fletcher Wildlife Gardens and Dominion Arboretum 01 May 2016

After work this afternoon at around 3pm I went to do some afternoon birding around Fletcher Wildlife Gardens and the Arboretum. There still aren’t tons of warblers around yet but there were still a few good ones. New and exciting birds today included Nashville Warblers, Black-throated Green Warbler, Palm Warbler and Blue-headed Vireo.

Nashville Warbler drinking nectar

Nashville Warbler drinking nectar

Nashville Warbler

Nashville Warbler

Comma species (Gray Comma)

Comma species (Gray Comma)

Trillium

Trillium

Trillium

Trillium

Red-tailed Hawk (borealis)

Red-tailed Hawk (borealis)

Yellow Warbler (male)

Yellow Warbler (male)

Yellow Warbler (female)

Yellow Warbler (female)

Marsh Marigold

Marsh Marigold

Purple Finch

Purple Finch

Purple Finch

Purple Finch

Purple Finch

Purple Finch

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrow

Blue-headed Vireo

Blue-headed Vireo

Blue-headed Vireo

Blue-headed Vireo

Norway Maple flowers and new leaves

Norway Maple flowers and new leaves

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

At the Arboretum there is a beautiful and huge Rhododendron shrub that caught my eye and I just had to go and check it out.  I spent a few minutes admiring it and it’s flowers.  It’s just about in full bloom and it’s pretty spectacular!

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Rhododendron flowers in the shade.

Lately I’ve also had a few great opportunities while at work.  I work outside doing gardening and landscaping work so I get to listen and watch out for birds all day and I also get to travel to different areas of the city everyday and monitor different urban, suburban and almost rural habitats. I always have my binoculars and camera with me in my backpack just in case something amazing happens. Today at work in Merivale Gardens adjacent to the NCC Greenbelt area just south of the Nepean Sportsplex (where I work quite often, at least once a week) an American Redstart came flitting through the backyard this afternoon. This area (along Revol Rd.) is practically a guaranteed area to find, or at least hear, a Carolina Wren.  Every time that I come to work here, this year and last, there is a wren singing loud nearby in the neighbourhood or in the forest behind the property.

American Redstart (male)

American Redstart (male) – 10 May 2016

On the 07th of May while working in Champlain Park across the river in Gatineau, Quebec a bright male Black-throated Green Warbler was singing in the mature forest nearby and eventually made it’s way into the front yard where I was working.  I watched as it gleaned insects off the tree branches and even got treated to a front row seat to full blast version of it’s sweet song. All day I listened to a symphony of Black-throated Green Warblers, Brown Creepers and Chipping Sparrows that day.

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler – 07 May 2016

Black-throated Green Warbler with snack

Black-throated Green Warbler with snack – 07 May 2016

Undertail Coverts of Black-throated Green Warbler

Undertail Coverts of Black-throated Green Warbler – 07 May 2016

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler – 07 May 2016

Black-throated Green Warbler singing in Cedar hedge.

Black-throated Green Warbler singing in Cedar hedge. – 07 May 2016

Another really neat find on 07 May 2016 in Gatineau, QC was a Gray Tree Frog we noticed while trimming overhead branches on very tall mature trees. When we first noticed it it was perched on a fence but I had to move it out of the way of falling branches.  Because I was in the middle of working (and with other people), I only took a few quick photos with my iPhone. It was amazing to see it’s suction-cupped toes and I also noticed it’s yellow patch on the back-inside of it’s thighs.  I learned later that they are chamelion-like and can change colour to match their surroundings and blend in, amazing!

Gray Tree Frog

Gray Tree Frog

Gray Tree Frog

Gray Tree Frog

Gray Tree Frog

Gray Tree Frog

On the 05th of May in Grenfell Glen a male Rose-breasted Grosbeak dropped in while I was working and came to inspect me and my radio which I had tuned to CBC radio 2 that day. Birds seem to be intrugued or not at all bothered by either radio or me singing and humming along to music which kind of has been surprising me.  Actually maybe that is why they’ve been coming in so close to me, to find out what on earth is going on.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Rose-breasted Grosbeak – 05 May 2016

I first noticed the Rose-breasted Grosbeak when it started singing in a tree right above my head. It somewhat sounds like an American Robin when it sings but it was it’s call notes that caught my attention and made me think, “Purple Finch, but that’s not quite it?!”

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Rose-breasted Grosbeak – 05 May 2016

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Rose-breasted Grosbeak – 05 May 2016

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Rose-breasted Grosbeak – 05 May 2016

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